Thursday, 11 October 2012

Watz Online - 11 Oct 2012

French fashion label says no to Chinese tourists?

Last year, Paris was the number one travel destination for Chinese tourists (Photo: Wikimedia) 

High-end French fashion label Zadig & Voltaire will be opening a boutique hotel in Paris in 2014.

But news of the upcoming Zadig Hotel has been overshadowed by what Thierry Gillier, owner of the label, told Women’s Wear Daily.

According to Time magazine, he had said the 40-room hotel will be selective when it comes to guests and that “it won’t be open to Chinese tourists, for example”. 

Chinese tourists' per capita expenditure in Singapore triples in 10 years

More and more Chinese tourists choose to visit Singapore for longer time, with visit arrivals doubled and per capita expenditure tripled during the past ten years from 2002 to 2011.

According to official data from Singapore Tourism Board (STB), China was once the third largest in-bound market for Singapore in 2002, with only 670,000 visitor arrivals. But since 2003, China has become the second largest in-bound market, from which about 1. 578 million people visited Singapore last year, a dramatic increase of 35 percent from 2010.

"The growth momentum continued into 2012. Between January to May 2012, we received 856,000 visitors, registering a year-on-year growth of 30.7 percent, when compared with the same period last year." Edward Chew, Chief Representative Regional Director of Greater China Region in STB told Xinhua.

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Jackie Chan: "Diaoyu Islands belong to China"

"The Diaoyu Islands definitely belong to China!" that was what Hollywood beloved Hong Kong icon Jackie Chan is saying in the ongoing debate about the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands conflict.

According to Asian Crunch website, speaking at an event in Taitung, Taiwan, Chan – who has been in the country filming his new movie, "Chinese Zodiac" voiced out his own opinion regarding the Sino-Japanese territorial dispute, stating, "The Diaoyu Islands belong to China, but what I say doesn't count, it is up to the government to deal with it."

The actor added, "I wish I am Superman, so I can pull the island closer."

Beggars behind bars at Chinese temple fair

More than 100 beggars were kept in an area behind bars at a Chinese temple fair, sparking online outrage. (YouTube screengrab)

Beijing News reports that at this year’s famous Xishan Temple Fair in China’s Jiangxi province, more than 100 beggars were seated in a row on the ground under a shaded area bounded by metal bars.

Below a sign reading “Temporary Rescue Shelter”, beggars old and young sat with bowls placed in front of the bars in the hopes of receiving help from the hundreds of thousands of Taoist worshippers who visited the town’s famous temple “Wanshou Gong”.

When pictures of the scene surfaced online after the fair started in mid-September, internet users condemned the treatment as “disrespecting (the beggars’) human dignity, a direct restriction of personal freedom”. Some even called it illegal detainment, while others slammed the beggars’ treatment as inhumane and uncivilised. 

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Revisiting the succession question

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong says he intends to stay in office for 10 more years. If he does, it will result in a record father-and-son tenure as prime minister.

Faced with a host of tough problems that challenges his government’s ability to resolve, the prime minister has made it clear that he intends to stay in office for 10 more years.

The 60-year-old Lee Hsien Loong told an interviewer that he would prefer not to lead beyond then and “definitely not till 80”.

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Singapore's film block a symbolic act

The Media Development Authority of Singapore (MDA) posted on its Web site two weeks ago the reason behind restricting access to the anti-Muslim film "Innocence of Muslims".

It stated: "The Ministry of Home Affairs has informed us that the YouTube video clip 'Innocence of Muslims' contains material that is contrary to the public interest and incites 'religious hatred, strife or intolerance' and is therefore in breach of Singapore's laws. In response, we have directed Google to restrict access to the video in Singapore."

The use of Internet Content regulation in the form of the Internet Code of Practice gives legislative teeth to the government's powers. However, this gesture is more symbolic than effective given that Singaporean users with U.S. proxy services as well as accessing other Web sites could view the clip should they choose to.

Singapore to boast of world’s biggest dome

The National Stadium is expected to be completed in 2014. (Photo courtesy of Arup) 

The new Singapore National Stadium is set to be the world's largest dome structure.

On schedule and slated for completion in 2014, the centerpiece of the Sports Hub will boast of a 310-metre wide steel dome roof.

That will make it 35-metres wider than the Cowboys Stadium in Texas, which currently has the bragging rights as the world's biggest dome structure 

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Singapore is rich expats' top place to live and work: Survey

Singapore has emerged as the top place for wealthy expatriates to live and work in, a new survey by HSBC Bank has shown.

Expats in the survey ranked Singapore first out of 30 countries based on economic factors such as earning power, disposable income and ability to accumulate luxuries.

Thailand was in the second spot, followed by Cayman Islands in third place. About 44 per cent of respondents said they saw a 50 per cent or more increase in their disposable income after they relocated to Singapore, the report said

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Survey: 92% of Singaporeans save money

A HIGHER percentage of Singaporeans have accumulated savings and investments than their peers in India, the United States and Britain.

Mainland Chinese pip the Republic in terms of savings, but Singaporeans are well ahead in terms of investments, a new survey by insurer Aviva has found.

More than nine out of 10 Singapore respondents - 92% - said they saved some money.

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Survey- 50% couples not having babies because ‘Money No Enough’

According to a recent survey conducted by voluntary welfare organisation ‘I Love Children’, about 1 in 2 couples (50%) said not having enough finances is the main reason for not having children. Another 33% or 1 in 3 couples cited not being mentally prepared as another reason for putting off having children.

A total of 614 participants were involved in the survey.

‘I Love Children’ is a voluntary welfare organization set up in September 2005 with a purpose of keeping Singapore young — by advocating a higher priority to having children, and promoting a society where children are loved and mainstreamed. It hopes to inculcate the value and importance of parenthood and family among Singaporeans, as well as encourage a children-friendly environment in Singapore. 

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S'pore transgender hits back over rude slur

Local transport operator SBS Transit will take disciplinary action against a bus driver who verbally abused a transgender passenger on Tuesday morning, the company reportedly said in a statement.

Public relations consultant Leona Lo posted on her blog that she was walking from Bedok Temporary Interchange to the MRT station when a bus driver shouted “Ah Kua” and mimicked her gait, while other SBS employees hooted and clapped.

“Ah Kua” is a hokkien derogatory term used for transgenders and trans-sexuals.